Standards for street design are critical to ensuring safe streets for all modes of transportation. Street standards assist City staff and private sector design professionals in applying a consistent approach to street design. Austin Transportation is working on several initiatives related to updating street design standards.

Transportation Criteria Manual Update

The City of Austin's Transportation Criteria Manual (TCM) is one of nine technical criteria manuals cited in Austin's Land Development Code (LDC). The TCM defines the rules, requirements, and technical guidelines for building mobility infrastructure in Austin. For the past two years, Austin Transportation staff worked with multiple City departments, partner agencies, and design professionals to update and modernize Austin's TCM.

An initial public comment period for the revised draft TCM was open from Tuesday, November 3, 2020 through Thursday, December 31, 2020.  Staff is reviewing feedback received during the comment period and editing the draft TCM before submitting an updated draft for interdepartmental review in February. The next draft of the revised TCM will be reviewed and approved through the Land Development Rule Posting Process in 2021.

Sign up for our newsletter to stay updated on the TCM rewrite. Have questions for the project team? Email at

Jan. 28 TCM Webinar

Join a panel of City of Austin experts on Thursday, Jan. 28 from 12 - 1 p.m. to hear what major themes emerged from the public comment period and how staff is incorporating public feedback into the next draft. Staff will also address questions from webinar attendees.

Register for the webinar in advance or watch the live stream on Facebook

Optimizing Street Design and Fire Response Access

The Austin Transportation and Austin Fire departments have been actively coordinating on a variety of public and private sector street design projects and standards. Our goal is to achieve the optimal balance of protection for multimodal traffic and fire emergencies that results in the fewest total deaths from all causes. Staff provided a memo to City Council on March 4, 2019, recommending strategies to optimize a shared vision for public safety. Below are several resources that provide more information on this initiative.


Austin Street Design Guide

Released June 20, 2017, the Austin Street Design Guide contains modern street cross-sections that consider street function, land use context, and all transportation modes. The guide serves as a precursor to updates to the City’s Transportation Criteria Manual. Feedback received from staff, private sector design professionals, and the community on the Austin Street Design Guide will inform the Transportation Criteria Manual update. This guide was developed by the Austin Transportation Department in coordination with other City Departments and Capital Metro.

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